Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

REDD+ may see billions of dollars paid to developing countries to improve forest management. This could potentially provide co-benefits for biodiversity conservation. Whilst this issue has been assessed several times in the existing literature, biodiversity itself has tended to be treated as homogenous. Here we propose a new framework in which to disaggregate and assess potential biodiversity beneficiaries of REDD+: pleiotropy and charisma. Pleiotropy describes the dependence of a species' conservation status on habitat loss alone. Pleiotropically-linked species are threatened principally by forest loss and are most likely to benefit from activities such as reduced deforestation. Non-pleiotropically-linked species are also threatened by other processes such as hunting, and will require extra funding outside REDD+ such as premium payments for their conservation. Charisma describes the degree to which species may be able to generate premiums. We consider that the incorporation of these two dimensions into the REDD+ debate will facilitate a more nuanced discussion of biodiversity co-benefits amongst researchers and other stakeholders than has so far been the norm. © M.B. Collins, E.J. Milner-Gulland, E.A. Macdonald and D.W. Macdonald.

Original publication




Journal article


Tropical Conservation Science

Publication Date





261 - 266